UW employees get shafted..again

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Tens of thousands of state employees can kiss goodbye the two percent pay raise that had been promised to them for the next two years.

Who’s getting hit? Non-union workers, of course. And then – the part that must really tickle our continually active friend Steve Nassroughly 19,500 University of Wisconsin faculty and staff.

Hence, the legislature is obviously shying away from negotiating with unions to reduce pay, yet it doesn’t seem to have the same problem when dealing with pesky academics.

“The disparate treatment between union and nonunion workers is expected to intensify a push among some UW faculty and staff to form unions of their own. A plan granting them collective bargaining rights passed the Legislature’s budget committee this month and is expected to be approved as part of the state budget in coming weeks.”

Well wouldn’t that be ironic? The legislature denies them pay and then allows them to unionize, assuring an almost immediate conflict with the new union about pay.

Luckily, Madison native son Sen. Fred Risser was on scene to criticize the plan.

“It’s quite a morale buster to tell people you’re trying to hire that you’ll have no anticipation of a pay raise” and face furloughs and higher health insurance premiums, Risser said.

“I don’t know how you’re going to recruit the best and brightest that way. It bothers me but you have no alternatives for the next two years.”

Granted, the governor is currently between a rock and a hard place. However, until he proposes drastic cuts in prison spending, it’s hard to argue that UW faculty should be giving up pay in the midst of a recruiting crisis at UW. Predictably, district attorneys were spared of the pay cuts because they supply the inmates to the monster prison system that has contributed more to the governor’s campaign warchest than any other separate industry.

By the way, where the hell is Biddy Martin?


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3 Responses to “UW employees get shafted..again”

  1. Sam Clegg Says:

    Great post, Sconz! But quick question: How much was cut out of the prison budget, if anything? And that’s fascinating about Doyle’s campaign connections; I always thought prisons were an exclusive circle jerk of the repubs…

  2. The Sconz Says:

    Thanks for the question.

    True, the GOP is far worse than Doyle & Co., and it is of course Republicans who are standing in the way of the little progress the governor is making on prison reform by trying to roll back some of the “truth in sentencing” nonsense that he himself authorized as attorney general and which caused the massive increase in prison construction in the 90’s. However, in the current budget he has only proposed a 1% across the board cut in corrections spending. Moreover, the projections in the budget actually place the corrections budget as INCREASING in 2010 and 2011. I’ll definitely be getting deeper into this subject later on.

  3. Zach Says:

    There’s a lot of irony in the latest round of budget dealings. While the Governor has announced furloughs, pay freezes, and other measures to help close the budget gap, some departments (mine being an example) are still hiring new employees.

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